Going out into the wilderness is something you should always take seriously by preparing ahead of time. For many people this includes doing research on the weather and area they’ll be exploring, but it should also mean gathering supplies needed for survival. Are you familiar with what the most important supplies are? If you want to avoid over-packing and bring only what is necessary, then read the following list. It will give you an idea of what survival essentials you’ll need in addition to your everyday basics.
If you happen to get lost and your GPS doesn’t work, a compass is one of the best tools to have. It will tell you which direction you’re heading so you won’t have to second guess yourself every step of the way. In addition to a compass you may want to have a map with you, especially if you’re in a dense woodland area or one that you’re not very familiar with.
Tip: If you have never used a compass before, take some time to learn so you’re not confused when you need it the most.
2. First Aid Kit
Even if you’re careful with each step that is taken, bumps and falls happen. Fortunately first aid kits can help with most accidents, as they include items such as: sunscreen, needle and thread, bandages, antibacterial ointment, gauze, and more. Compare different first aid kits before making your final choice to determine which offers the most for the amount of space you have available.
There are tons of things you can do with a knife, so it’s important to make sure it’s with you at all times. From cutting rope so you can build a trap to cutting supplies to build a shelter, it can come in handy with all aspects of your journey. There are made different types of knives, but those with fixed blades are said to be the best because they are more durable. However, a folding blade will be just fine if you take great care to make sure it doesn’t break.
Keep a beanie with you even with the weather outside seems like it’s fairly nice. If it does happen to get cold, it will keep your body much warmer than it would be without it.
5. Fire Starter
Starting a fire from scratch can be nearly impossible, even for skilled travelers. By having a lighter, matches, or a fire starter with you, it’ll be that much easier to start a fire to keep you safe and warm.
The body may be able to survive for a while without food, but it can’t survive for nearly as long without water. A re-usable water bottle will come in handy, but a water purification tool should also be brought along in case you run out. This will get rid of potentially harmful contaminants in the water you find so you can keep hydrated.
7. Energy Bars
Although you may be able to survive for a while without food, it’s still helpful to have energy bars with you that will help keep you going. The best choices are small bars that are packed with fat, vitamins, calories, and nutrients. These should also have electrolytes to help replenish your body so you can keep going until you get home. Of course it might be tempting to bring a cooler of food with you, but in an emergency, you’ll want small bars that don’t weigh much in your backpack.
8. Space Blanket
Traditional blankets are not very practical to take outdoors because of their weight and size. Space blankets are a great alternative because they are made out of PET plastic, which is lightweight and compact. When used properly, it can reflect heat so that it’s useful in both hot and cold weather conditions. It can even be used as a shelter by tying it up to trees and having it reflect the sun. If you’re not familiar with how to use one of these blankets, then it’s recommended to do some research ahead of time by watching videos online.
If you need to build something, make a splint, create a fishing line, or repair your tent, then you’ll need rope. 550 parachute cord in particular is one of the most highly recommended ropes for outdoor travelers, as it’s strong, lengthens when wet, and is very lightweight. It won’t take up as much space as a traditional rope, which is important with backpacking any length of time.
It can be easy to get lost out in the wilderness, even when you’re with a group of people. By having something to signal with, it can be easier to keep in contact if something like this happens. A cell phone would be nice, but it may not always have reception, which is why you’ll need a whistle. Keep this around your neck so you can signal friends or even strangers that you need help.
Lighting is crucial to have when it’s dark or bad weather, but typical flashlights are difficult to hold while you’re trying to do something else. Headlamps solve this problem, as they have lights built right into the front of them. This gives you hands-free lighting so you can use both of your hands to take care of repairs or other projects you need to do.
12. Extra Clothes
One pair of extra clothes, including socks and gloves, is a necessity nobody should skip. Although the clothing will take up space, it could be necessary if your clothing were to get ruined or wet. By having an extra pair of everything you’ll be able to always have something comfortable to wear so you’re never stuck in soaking wet socks or shirts that are hanging by the thread.
Surviving the Outdoors
Whether going biking, hiking, camping, or backpacking across the country, it’s crucial to have survival items with you at all times. You never know what’s going to happen, so it’s best to be safe and prepared for the unknown. One of those items you pack could very well save your life, making them well worth picking up. Whether you’re a beginner or have gone on many expeditions before, take this list into account so you have peace of mind knowing you’re safer on your next outing.